Is A Two Year Old Too Young To Participate in Halloween?

by Carrie with Children with 12 comments

Help me! I’m having an internal struggle with myself this morning. Do I dress my girls up for Halloween?  Molly is definitely too young to participate, I’m not even sure I’ll dress her up. But is Maggie at the age to really “get” Halloween? She’ll be two in two weeks. (Yikes!) I can’t decide if I should play along or just wait until next year. Last year, I dressed Mags in her NFL Jaguars cheerleader outfit.   I felt like I was cheating by using an outfit we already owned, but Maggie didn’t even know the difference. Plus, I saved money by not buying something new!

This year, I’m struggling over whether to participate or not.  She doesn’t understand why Mommy is dressing her up and the last thing she needs is a bag full of sweets (and her parents don’t need it either)! However, she might enjoy using her costume again for playing dress up.  I did some online window shopping at Amazon and found a few costumes that I love, but just can’t get myself to click the “Buy” button yet.  As of right now, the garden gnome costume is tops on my list.  Isn’t it just the cutest? 

What age do you think is appropriate for toddlers to participate in trick or treating?  What is your little one’s costume for Halloween this year?  I’ll keep you posted on whether I play along with Halloween or put it off another year!  

filed under Parenting, Tell Me Your Tips
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  • Gina

    We dressed up and went trick-or-treating at the mall with my son last year – and he had just turned one! He was excited to be dressed up!

  • Anonymous

    My kids enjoyed it last year when they were 9 months. This year Jonas thought the costume was funny (girrafe), but Henry did not like the hat (monkey). If I didn't make Henry wear the hat, he was fine. Melanie

  • Stephanie Thigpen

    My daughter is almost 18 months, and I'm having the same issue. I mean, it's not like I'm going to let her eat the candy! I like to spare headaches as much as possible, and I don't think she would understand the concept of it… So, instead, I found a festival about 20 minutes from our house the Saturday before Halloween and I'm dressing her up (In the same costume, nonetheless!) and taking her there. Hopefully she'll enjoy it! Can't wait to see what you decide.

  • Patrick Spence

    As a father to be I don't know exactly where I stand on this yet. My earliest memory of trick-or-treating was when I was about 3.5 years old, and even then we only went around to the family members houses (granny, uncle, cousins). My mother usually didn't "buy" me a costume, we made them. I think I was a sheep for my first t-o-t experience (and that costume was made from pajamas).

    I'm thinking the 3-4 year old range is when to start. 12 is definitely the cut off for door to door begging of candy.

  • Anonymous

    My grandson just turned 2…we let him pick out his halloween costume-he's going to be Spiderman. He doesn't have a clue who Spiderman is but he loves to run around the house with the mask on. Of course it doesn't help that his MIMI loves to play dress up also. Halloween is my favorite time of the year-regardless of the fact that his mommy's birthday is officially the 30th but we always celebrate Halloween as her birthday. I know he's not officially going trick or treating like in the old days but he will be going to a festival to still have some old fashioned fun. I think you should still dress up Molly even though she's still too young to know the difference.
    ENJOY the fall festivals.
    Pam Rodgers King

  • Leslie

    My Lilli has been a cheerleader, too. I am not sure she gets that she will get candy for dressing up. She is going to a pirate and she says "arrgh matey" sooo cute! She is almost 2 1/2. Our baby boy is two months and will just wear a onesie for his first Halloween.

  • Kimi

    When Campbell was 3 months shy of 2, we did not participate. She would not keep any kind of costume on, so we said screw it. The next year, when she was almost 3, she really enjoyed it. Kenyon is 18 months now and will just be wearing a Halloween t-shirt from Target. She will probably only go to a few houses with Campbell and then she'll go back home. I'm not sure what Campbell is going to be this year yet, she keeps changing her mind.

  • Heather

    Alyssa is getting dressed up, but only to help hand out candy – we usually get 75-100 kids! She won't be trick or treating, although I'm sure Brian would love to get the candy if she did.

  • Jodi

    I am your newest follower from Bloggy Moms. We've had our kids participate since they could walk. They just enjoyed being with the other people and following the older kids…even though they didn't get it.

    Stop by and visit my blog sometime!

  • Carrie

    When my oldest two were small, we dressed them up primarily to get a picture. We usually managed a couple good shots before they were screaming or crying or simply ripping off whatever costume we'd wrestled them into.
    For the past 4 years, though, I have been having doing thematic costumes for all the kids. We've done Star Wars, Alice in Wonderland, and the Wizard of OZ, and this year is Toy Story. We dress 'em all up, for some reason the youngers have all been pretty cooperative! So I vote you dress them up together!

  • Crystal

    Hello! My daughter is 18 months and we are dressing her up but not going trick or treating. My husband and I decided to wait until she can say "trick or treat" to take her out on the town.

    I'm a new follower through the Follow Me, Chickadee blog hop. I look forward to reading your awesome blog!

    You can find my blog at!

    Have a great weekend!
    My Life as Mom and Wife

  • Carrie with Children

    Well, the verdict is in! I bought the garden gnome outfit over the weekend and we are going to take her to the mall's trick or treating event and probably the grocery store's event too. I think that should be enough for to wear her out pretty good! 🙂